15+ Best Clarifying Shampoos for Curly Hair: Pros and Cons

Are you feeling like losing the extra charm factor on your hair?  Perhaps that is because of the unwanted buildup of the residues layered up on the surface of your curls. Have you thought about the best clarifying shampoo for curly hair? 

In case of such continued deposition of the contaminants and residues, your hair will start looking dull, lifeless, and toned down.

best clarifying shampoo for curly hair

To bring back the long-lost charm and shine to your curls, it becomes necessary to apply a good clarifying shampoo for curly hair. However, most clarifying shampoos in the market contain sulfate which is harmful to the hair.

So, you have to be selective while choosing the right clarifying shampoo for your curls. We have picked some top-notch shampoo for you in this article.

16 Best Clarifying Shampoo for Curly Hair

1. Twist Hit Reset Clarifying Light Shampoo

When it’s time to delete the additional greasy buildup and bring back the natural bounces, Twist clarifying shampoo for wavy hair will always help. It balances the pH levels and locks in the inherent moisture of your hair. We would suggest applying the twist shampoo and conditioner twice or thrice a week for better sound results.

best clarifying shampoo for curly hair

Essentials: contains all of the goodness like jojoba, echinacea extract, rice protein, aloe vera, and panthenol.

Avoids: Do not include Phthalates, petroleum, mineral oil, sulfates, D4, 5, or 6 silicones among the most harmful.

Additional Features: It’s a light clarifying shampoo in creamy format; smells the unique twist scent.


  • Combats dull boring curls and brings the natural curl bounced back.
  • Delete polluting buildup like dirt, oil, toxins, etc.
  • A power combo of purification- balance -non-stripping.


  • The shampoo texture is a bit heavy and may lead to dandruff on over-usage.

2. Acure Curiously Clarifying Shampoo and Conditioner Bundle

If you liked the twist shampoo and conditioner, then you can rely blindly on Acure clarifying hair duo too. It’s the herbal best clarifying shampoo for curly hair made of lemongrass and argan. The hair product is based on performance delivery and gently removes buildup without any stripping as such.

best clarifying shampoo for curly hair

Essentials: It’s a 100% vegan product made out of lemongrass and argan oil. The good clarifying shampoo for curly hair and conditioner is free from any pretentious elements.

Avoids: These are free from cruelty, paraben, sulfate, mineral oil, formaldehyde, petroleum, etc.

Additional Features: The item is in creamy form and spreads a sweet lemongrass scent.


  • Supports a performance-driven hair care goal.
  • Cleanses and builds up, and treats the curls with a double dose of herbal oils.
  • Guarantees shine and restore natural hair moisture.


  • The hair does not feel quite clean on the first wash as per a few users.
  • Some users are not used to the lemongrass scent.

3. Kristin Ess Deep Clean Clarifying Hair Shampoo

Kristina Ess’s best clarifying shampoo for locs will bring a refreshing start every time you feel lifeless. It’s not only a clarifying shampoo for 4c hair or wavy types but all hairstyles.

best clarifying shampoo for curly hair

So apply the universal shampoo to cleanse and deeply condition your hair from root to tip and introduce a unique charm. The clarifying shampoo protects your locs from environmental pollutants and color fade.

Essentials: The refreshing shampoo is infilled with castor oil, avocado oil, hydrolyzed pea protein, and mango seed butter.

Avoids: The clarifying shampoo for wavy hair is cruelty-free, paraben-free, phthalates and silicones free.

Additional Features: The item is in gel form, and contains a fresh ambrette seed, magnolia sandalwood scent.


  • Suitable for all hair types and volumizes and purifies the hair.
  • It is super sudsing and acts as a shine enhancer.
  • The shampoo is 100% vegan and works as a mineral detoxifier.


  • Your scalp may feel a bit itchy for sensitive ones.

4. SheaMoisture Residue Remover Shampoo for Natural/Synthetic Hair

Similar to the twist shampoo and conditioner, SheaMoisture residue remover shampoo also lightly clarifies and innately hydrates the nutrients. The anti-residue shampoo both cleanses the natural and synthetic wigs.

You can try the good clarifying shampoo for curly hair daily which leaves the hair soft and manageable.

good clarifying shampoo for curly hair

Essentials: The residue remover shampoo contains shea butter, borage seed oil, tea tree leaf oil, capric acid, citric acid, caprylic acid, etc.

Avoids: The shampoo exempts parabens, phthalates, mineral oil, and petroleum,  free from animal cruelty.

Additional Features: The clarifying shampoo is in cream form and is available in an organic aloe vera scent.


  • Can be applied in both natural and synthetic wigs or hair strands.
  • The shampoo leaves your hair soft, manageable, and shiny.
  • Is effectively hydrating and acts as a detox shampoo.


  • Your hair feels dry and needs to be hydrated often.

5. African Pride Moisture Miracle Pre Shampoo

Looking for a pre clarifying shampoo for 4c hair? The African Pride pre-shampoo is an authentic formula and in a way does its best to minimize breakage for natural kinks and curls.

good clarifying shampoo for curly hair

The best clarifying shampoo for curly hair smoothly de-tangles hair and protects against hair breakage. The pre-shampoo is specially curated to address the needs of coily and kinky hair.

Essentials: the hair shampoo comprises coconut milk, honey, aloe vera, and 5 essential oils rich in vitamin E promoting natural growth and restraining hair breakage.

Avoids: Not only the specific shampoo but all African Pride products are free from harmful components like parabens, sulfates, mineral oils, and petroleum. 

Additional Features: The item is there in liquid form and has a natural coconut oil-like scent.


  • Cleanses and detangles hair organically with the benefits of essential oils.
  • Better conditions, nourishes, and protects from breakage.
  • Made with a unique signature blend of African ingredients.


  • The hair may feel dry and stringy if not handled with a conditioner.

6. Nothing But Sulfate Free Detox Clarifying Shampoo

If you are struggling with your dull and flat hair because of the constant dirt buildup, the best clarifying shampoo for locs will come to your rescue.

good clarifying shampoo for curly hair

The formula helps in deep cleansing and innately removing the deep-seated contaminants be it in the form of excess oil, hair residue, etc. Besides, the materials applied are safer for all hair types and even can be applied on color-treated hair.

good clarifying shampoo for curly hair

Essentials: The clarifying shampoo for wavy hair includes Sodium C14-16 Olefin sulfonate (from coconut oil), cocamide DEA, capric glycerides, citric acid, etc.

Avoids: The product is intolerant of harmful chemicals like parabens, sulfates, minerals, petroleum, etc.

Additional Features: Made in the USA, It’s a sulfate-free detox and is also neutral to any fragrance.


  • You can feel a natural sheen with healthier hair.
  • Dissolves any kind of deep-seated buildup and chlorine.
  • Intensely cleanses the scalp.


  • The clarifying shampoo somehow leaves slimy deposits that have not been liked by users.

7. Monday Hair Care Clarifying Shampoo

For those who have messy curls along with oily hair types, the clarifying shampoo is for them. The best clarifying shampoo for curly hair smooths your wavy or frizzy curls and gently massages your scalp for extra TLC.

good clarifying shampoo for curly hair

More than so, the clarifying shampoo for wavy hair packaged in pink bottles is dermatologist-tested, SLS-free, and has a proper pH balance.

Essentials: The clinically proven clarifying shampoo contains ingredients like grapefruit extract, vitamin E, shea butter, and coconut oil.

Avoids: The shampoo is free from parabens, SLS, sulfate, and cruelty, and is 100% recyclable.

Additional Features: The item is in liquid format and will mainly suit oily hair types.

clarifying shampoo for wavy hair


  • Volumizes the thin and fine hair.
  • Those hair types become dry and need hydration, the shampoo will supply moisture and repair the hair.
  • Particular ingredients like grapeseed oil extract act as an antioxidant and removes the excess oil.


  • Some users complained about hair curls further turning greasy using the shampoo.

8. Ouidad Water Works Clarifying Shampoo

Ouidad with its unique idea of letting curls be curls is one of the authentic curl experts in the haircare field. Similar to the twist shampoo and conditioner series, Ouidad water works shampoo is professional in this field with the most positive reviews.

clarifying shampoo for wavy hair

They use fruit extracts in cleaning dull contaminants which otherwise would have deposited in heavy hair styling.

Essentials: A blend of essentials like citric acid, grapefruit extract, sugarcane extract, camellia oleifera leaf extract, lemon, Apple peel extract, etc.

Avoids: The clarifying shampoo for wavy hair avoids animal testing.

Additional Features: Made in the USA, The product is available in liquid form for curly hair and scents like citrus fruit.


  • Remove hard ward deposits and chlorine.
  • Helps in eliminating coarseness and in a way restores the shine and manageability.
  • Also recommended for use in color-treated hair.
  • Gently removes the residues without any hair stripping.


  • Better packaging is expected as the inner content often leaks out.
  • Not recommended for dry or frizzy hair types.

9. Matrix A Curl Can Dream Deep Cleansing Shampoo

Matrix A curl can dream good clarifying shampoo for curly hair that tries to preserve every unique curl pattern. It’s a deep-cleansing shampoo and is highly recommended if you are thinking about uprooting deep-seated sediments over your scalp.

clarifying shampoo for wavy hair

As a deep clarifying shampoo brand, Matrix preserves everyone’s uniqueness and tries to make everyone feel loved and special.

Essentials: The deep clarifying shampoo is a powerful result of salicylic acid, mauka honey extract, citric acid, benzyl salicylate, etc.

Avoids: The organic deep shampoo does not include any silicones and parabens.

Additional Features: The item is in liquid form and has scents like rose peony, and sea salts.


  • It’s a perfect wash-day shampoo removing buildup and preserving the unique pattern.
  • Preserves the unique curl pattern.
  • It’s a powerful blend of organic ingredients and free from silicones and parabens.


  • The texture of the shampoo is dense and can feel heavy while applying it.

10. Moroccanoil Clarifying Shampoo for 4c Hair

Moroccanoil clarifying shampoo brings a healthy balance to your hair and ultimately makes your scalp feel weightless.

Moroccanoil’s best clarifying shampoo for locs would boost your lifeless dull hair and deeply cleanses the day-by-day build-ups. The shampoo arrives in concentrated form so liberally add water for better lathering.

clarifying shampoo for wavy hair

Essentials: it’s a deep cleansing formula with essential ingredients like keratin, avocado, argan oils, lavender, chamomile, jojoba, extracts, etc.

Avoids: It’s a cruelty-free PETA product. Other than that chemicals like paraben, phosphate, and sulfate are strictly avoided.

Additional Features: You can experience a unique Moroccan oil scent (a blend of sweet floral notes, and amber aromas)  which is the signature mark of the brand.


  • The ingredients like jojoba, chamomile, and lavender would supply intense nourishment to your hair.
  • Restores the healthy hair balance and gives a weightless feel.
  • Lifts the environmental impurities and other hair buildup.


  • Your hair may feel rough and frizzy after use.

11. Avalon Organics Clarifying Lemon Shampoo

Avalon Organics’ best clarifying shampoo for curly hair is made out of plant-sourced botanicals and essential oils.

So, the main job of the good clarifying shampoo for curly hair is to bring back the charm and shine of your faded boring hair. The clarifying shampoo very skillfully removes excess oil and revitalizes the hair.

clarifying shampoo for wavy hair

Essentials: The Avalon Organics lemon clarifying shampoo is a mix of aloe vera leaf juice, citrus gum, Atlanta bark oil, calendula flower extract, sodium chloride, etc.

Avoids: The clarifying shampoo is vegan and is noninclusive of GMOs. It is free from parabens, phthalates, synthetic colors, and animal testing.

Additional Features: The shampoo is in liquid form and suits dry hair types. Your hair will smell citric after applying it.


  • Naturally highlights and brings shine to the dull lackluster hair.
  • The organic formula revitalizes and gently cleanses the hair.
  • Is resourced with healthy organic, herbal sources.


  • The scent is overwhelming and should be worked on.

12. Neutrogena Anti-Residue Clarifying Shampoo

Neutrogena’sbest clarifying shampoo for curly hair helps to lift 90% of dull residues and dirt fixed at the intersection of your curls.

It’s a nonirritating formula that simply tries to gently cleanse your hair and add volume by draining away the buildup. The shampoo is impactful and even fits color-treated or frizzy hair curls.

best clarifying shampoo for locs,

Essentials: a blend of hydrogenated castor oil, citric acid, hydantoin, glycerin, and fragrance.

Avoids: It’s a clean formula free from artificial dyes and colorants.

Additional Features: The shampoo is dye-free and suited for multicultural hair types.


  • The best clarifying shampoo for locs removes up to 90% of the dull residues in your hair.
  • Suits all hair types, is gentle, and is even better for color-treated or fine hair.
  • It’s a non-irritating formula adding volume to your bouncy curls.


  • Some users have expected better packaging.

13. Bounce Curl Enzyme Gentle Clarifying Shampoo

If you have liked the twist shampoo and conditioner because it preserves natural bouncy curls, then you will also love bounce curl enzyme clarifying shampoo.

The liquid shampoo would gently lift the build-ups caused by hair styling oils and other products without stripping out your hair. So, you can expect a lightly moisturizing hair effect without weighing down the curls.

best clarifying shampoo for locs,

Essentials: The light shampoo is packed with organic black seed oil, pro-vitamin B5, pomegranate, enzymes, Nobilis flower, rosemary, and other herbal plant extracts.

Avoids: is free from animal cruelty, and no synthetic fragrance is used.

Additional Features: The product is in liquid form, and has scents like sweet citrus and rosemary.


  • Tries to remove the oils and other buildup caused by styling products very gently.
  • Without weighing down the curls, very lightly moisturizes the hair.
  • Adds volume and texture to thin fine hair types.


  • May not be a good idea for color-treated hair.

14. Verb Curl Defining Hydration  Shampoo

Wanna have great hair without any filters? Try another of the best clarifying shampoo for 4c hair or other curls. The lightly textured shampoo would gently cleanse your waves, and curls without any fear of stripping the strands.

best clarifying shampoo for locs,

Moreover, the organic formula was formulated to wipe out the impurities, build-ups, hydrate your curls and minimize the frizz.

Essentials: The best clarifying shampoo for locs includes sunflower seed extract, maleic acid, lauric acid, hydrolyzed corn starch, etc.

Avoids: It’s a vegan clean product free from chemical toxins.

Additional Features: It would suit all curly hair types. The scent of the clarifying shampoo is light grapefruit and oatmeal.


  • The curl-defining shampoo gracefully removes impurities and maintains hydrating curls.
  • The formula removes impurities and minimizes the frizz.
  • Promotes healthier curls in the long run.


  • The scent is overwhelming.
  • Hair transformation can be noticed after much-awaited time.

15. Vicious Curl Foaming Clarifying Shampoo

It’s a foaming curl cleanse clarifying shampoo for wavy hair that locks in moisture and gives shape to the curl textures. The hydrating shampoo thoroughly cleanses the scalp and hair follicles and gently removes the buildup. The natural botanicals added bring vibrancy and shine to the hair.

best clarifying shampoo for locs,

Essentials: Contains the powerful antioxidants of aloe vera, vitamins A, C, D, E, B1, B3, Copper, Zinc, Coffee, Green Tea, Goji, Orange, Lemon, etc.

Avoids: It’s a non-GMO shampoo formula. Also is free from animal cruelty, paraben, dying alcohol, and sulfate.

Additional Features: The clarifying shampoo for 4c hair is made in Texas, USA. It scents like a mix of lemon and orange twinned together.


  • The anti-inflammatory ingredients make your hair even more lustrous.
  • The botanical extracts heal, protect, and rejuvenate the scalp and hair.
  • The antioxidants make your curls smooth, Springer, and stronger at once.


  • The scent is somehow old-school.

16. Ouai Detox Clarifying Shampoo

Ouai Detox clarifying shampoo for 4c hair cleanses your hair by getting rid of the hard water-like buildup of oil and dirt all at once.

Within 1-2 weeks of applying the good clarifying shampoo for curly hair, you can notice positive changes and thereby making you refreshingly start your day. Overall, the Ouai detox shampoo adds shine and softness to your coils and curls.

best clarifying shampoo for locs,

Essentials: the detox shampoo contains apple cider vinegar, citric acid, hydrolyzed keratin, and potassium sorbate.

Avoid: It is paraben and sulfate-free, color safe, and free from animal cruelty.

Additional Features: Recommended for all hair types. Available in a gel format and the fragrance is of melrose place, bergamot, cedarwood, lycee, white mask.


  • Intensely cleanses without the fear of stripping.
  • Patiently removes the product buildup.
  • Adds softness and charm to your curls.


  • Not recommended for extremely thin or fine hair types.

Benefits of Using a Clarifying Shampoo

Clarifying shampoos are good to use if you know to apply them moderately. Given that clarifying shampoo may contain some chemicals, it won’t be recommended for daily use. Nevertheless, there are some common benefits of using the best clarifying shampoo for locs, those are:

1. Deeply Cleanses and Wipes Out the Dirt.

Often due to the frequent use of hair styling products or exposure to outdoor pollutants, your hair surface may trap a lot of dirt. If left untreated, these oils and residues gradually accumulate on your scalp. So, a good clarifying shampoo takes the role of lifting the unwanted buildup and residues and making you feel clean.

2. Weightless Curls

You can have healthier curls free from the extra weight of the heavy residues. The clarifying shampoo also presents the natural moisture of your hair and ensures that your scalp feels equally hydrating and healthy at the same time.

3. Prevents Hair Complexities

Untreated continued hair residues are the root cause of many hair problems like dry scalp, itchiness, dandruff, and even dull hair. Such serious hair issues later would cause massive hair fall. So, given that prevention is better than cure, a toxin-free clarifying shampoo addresses those concerns by removing the residues and making your hair feel refreshed.

4. Softer, Shinier Springy Curls

The best clarifying shampoo for curly hair thoroughly cleanses your hair and brings back the long-lost charm of your hair strands. Your curls will become softer and bouncy thanks to the ingredients present in a clarifying shampoo like chlorides and bromides.  

Bounce Back Your Curls!

Your curls require extra care and deserve the best products for ensuring that. These 16 best clarifying shampoo for curly hair makes your curls smooth and defining at the same time.

Best Clarifying Shampoo for Curly Hair

These clarifying shampoos remove the build-up and dirt and bring a natural but sophisticated charm to your curls.

Moreover, the clarifying shampoos are resourced with the best botanical extracts which ensure gentle cleansing without the common fear of stripping. So, have better styling options from now on without the fear of pollution or dull hair.


1. Can I use a clarifying shampoo if I have a sensitive scalp?

Yes, even sensitive scalp can use clarifying shampoos that are clinically tested and free from chemicals. Sensitive scalps have to be extra conscious about the type of ingredients they are applying via the shampoo. Make sure that the shampoo is free from parabens, phthalates, artificial color dye, synthetic colors, etc.

2. Can I use a clarifying shampoo if I have color-treated curly hair?

If you are looking for clarifying shampoo for color-treated hair, make sure the formula is free from sulfate, which will be polite for your dye and won’t strip the hair strands.

Try out: Nothing But Sulfate Free Detox Clarifying Shampoo; Moroccanoil Clarifying Shampoo, etc from the above list.

3. How often should you use clarifying shampoo?

Clarifying shampoo unlike regular shampoos contains some chemicals which are not good for regular use. So, it’s recommended to use a clarifying shampoo not more than once or twice a week, to maintain the natural shine of your hair.

Also Read: 15+ Best Shampoos for Low Porosity Hair and Other Essentials: Review

Also Read: Top 15 Brazilian Blowout Shampoo and Conditioners: Pros & Cons

About Author /

Mouli Chakraborty is your trusted guide to all things beauty and hair with five years of experience in this area. Through her content, she tries to share contemporary fashion statements and brings to her readers trendy style ideas that know no age, color, or other bounds. Mouli also honestly reviews relevant skincare and haircare branded products, to help readers make informed and best choices. She loves to experiment with vintage, freestyle, and minimalist stylish looks and misses no chance to reflect her preference through her writings.

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